The Way We Live, Sunday 26 December 2010: Triumphs and Trials
There’s still five days to go but I’m guessing you’ve already called it. The votes are in. The tally’s been done. You’ve summed up 2010 in your head and made the decision whether you’ll file this away as a terrific twelve months or a year which sucked like your mother’s old Hoover.
But the fact is each year brings with it both triumphs and trials. Can’t think of any triumphs? Sure you can.
Take my year. After a six-year wait, dear friends finally got to meet and bring home their newly adopted son from China and he is the most cheerful little soul I’ve possibly ever met. After years on IVF my friend Lisa, who had given up on motherhood, fell pregnant naturally at the age of 42. Lisa’s due to have a baby boy in March. Meanwhile my friend Kat, who’s been single for ten years, fell in love with a glorious man and has started a new life with him in Perth. What else? Let’s see. After 12 months of gruelling study, family members passed their medical exams and are on the road to becoming doctors. New, wonderful friendships have come into my life when I least expected it. And last month I was given the chance to tell my favourite History teacher – Mike Selleck – how much he meant to me before he passed away last week.
And how about what we have done together through this column and our First Sunday Club? As a group we have raised more than $60,000 for a host of different charities. Just by donating $10 per month we’ve bought books for girls in Afghanistan, paid for street swags for our country’s homeless, contributed to an orphanage in Thailand, helped buy a Liberty swing for wheelchair-bound kids in McGregor, provided fresh pyjamas and storybooks to Queensland foster kids, paid for more staff to help educated school kids about the risks of spinal injuries and more counselling time for children who have been sexually assaulted. We’ve given high school girls better facilities at Southside Education, funded more research into stillbirths and ensured that more disadvantaged kids will have something to open on Christmas Day. (On that note, Ann George from Project Love and Care has asked me to pass on her deep gratitude for the overwhelming support you gave her this month). On 3 January when I launched the First Sunday Club I hoped we would spend the year changing lives. We did.
And while there are only a few days left of 2010, you never know what little triumphs are yet to unfold. This time last year I encouraged you to squirrel away every five-dollar note that came into your possession as a way to save money. Joan, a pensioner, wrote to me yesterday to tell me she now has $930 to spend over the holidays. Way to go, Joan! Yet another item to put in my 2010 triumphs list.
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Over the past 25 years Rebecca Sparrow has earned a living as a travel writer, a television publicist, a marketing executive, a magazine editor, a TV scriptwriter, a radio producer, a newspaper columnist and as an author.